Oliver North
WASHINGTON -- According to Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, everything is hunky-dory on America's southern border. In her public appearances and speeches, Napolitano consistently claims that things along our side of the U.S.-Mexico border are "safer than ever" and that "spillover violence" is simply "a widespread misperception." In a recent Wall Street Journal op-ed column she co-authored with Commerce Secretary Gary Locke, Napolitano claimed, "The Southwest Border Is Open for Business." Unfortunately, too much of the business is in drugs, murder and mayhem -- and business is good.

"Illegal immigration is decreasing. Deportations are increasing. And crime rates have gone down." Those oft-repeated assertions by the Obama administration make a nice sound bite, but like so many other things coming from the O-Team, the facts don't square with the rhetoric. As usual, there's more to the story -- and very little of it is being covered by the so-called mainstream media.

Less than 24 hours after Napolitano and Locke boasted about how "major investments to renovate and expand outdated ports of entry" have improved cross-border trade and "bolstered security," two American citizens were murdered while waiting to come into the U.S. at the San Ysidro port of entry, south of San Diego. The incident was buried by the potentates of the press, but Fox News correspondent William La Jeunesse reported the victims were killed by a lone male gunman, who calmly "walked through the lanes of traffic and boldly unloaded five rounds from a 9-mm. handgun." Apparently, the Obama administration's "improvements" on the border do not include long-range, high-resolution cameras capable of identifying a perpetrator just a few yards into Mexico.

In the past four months, two federal law officers have been murdered by heavily armed criminals. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry was killed 13 miles deep in Arizona on the night of Dec. 14-15. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Special Agent Jaime Zapata was assassinated south of Monterrey, Mexico, on Feb. 15. Napolitano offers reassurance by throwing out numbers. She says federal agents "seized 81 percent more currency, 25 percent more drugs and 47 percent more weapons" last year than they did during the final year of the Bush administration. She also contends that apprehensions of illegal aliens "have dropped by 36 percent over the past two years to less than a third of its all-time high."

The National Border Patrol Council, a union representing Border Patrol agents, isn't buying into the numbers game. In a statement posted March 25, the NBPC said: "Mexico is hemorrhaging violence and we are being hit with the splatter. The U.S.-Mexico border is unsafe and to say anything else is not true."

Oliver North

Oliver North is a nationally syndicated columnist, the host of War Stories on the Fox News Channel, the author of the new novel Heroes Proved and the co-founder of Freedom Alliance, an organization that provides college scholarships to the children of U.S. military personnel killed or permanently disabled in the line of duty. Join Oliver North in Israel by going to www.olivernorthisrael.com.